Approaching Absence

I dread the approaching absence from you:
The coming days–into weeks, into months–
When we are sundered by ocean swell and wave.

I see the dread of my leaving in your eyes
While I watch you count the calendar days left
Before I part–for not long, I swear!… I hope.

While young, I listened to comforting words:
“Absence makes the heart grow fonder”,
But I learned–not quickly enough–its lie.

Other sailors and soldiers know all too well
The sacrifices that go unseen by public eye,
But some felt more deeply than physical wounds.

For words alone cannot bind two as one–
Though words be sometimes all that is left–
So we patch ourselves together as best we can.

But for us, do not think there is no cause for hope,
For where love is, there hope may dwell also,
And love is where we are–together or apart.